Proposal - Shifting focus of mentors program from ship-based to subject-based

Posted March 2, 2021, 10:27 a.m. by Fleet Captain Sharon Miller (Supervisor of Experiments) (Sharon Miller)


In my second month as mentor’s co-ordinator, I’ve been tracking active mentorships and, currently, we have no command mentorships that I am aware of, and only two main fleet new player mentorships (that may or may not still be ongoing - am waiting for feedback from the persons involved).

So I’ve been thinking of how we could possibly make the mentors program more appealing and/or useful and, one suggestion raised by my predecessor, Thomas Bates, was to consider shifting the focus from assigning mentors by ship, to assigning mentors by subject area. And after discussing this idea at length with the current Academy Commandant, Calé, I think the idea has a lot of merit.

So I figured I’d open it for discussion to see what everyone else thinks. Some potential points to discuss:

1. Subject Areas

What might relevant subject areas be? A few suggestions off the top of my head are:

  • How to roleplay a specific department (with a separate mentor or mentors for each)

  • Writing believable treknobabble

  • Designing a new ship/technology spec

  • Creating and updating MOTD’s

  • Writing romantic relationships

  • Creating interesting swings

  • Writing cabinet applications

Obviously some of these would require more longer-term mentoring than others (so something like ‘writing romantic relationships’ or ‘creating interesting swings’ might only take a handful of interactions, whereas ‘designing a new ship spec’ would be more intensive). But I’d love to hear your feedback on these ideas or any other ideas you might have instead.

2. Assigning Mentors

If we do decide to implement some subject-specific mentors then what approach would be the best one to take?
a. Formalise, in advance, a list of agreed subjects and then allow people to volunteer for those specific subjects only?
b. Allow volunteers to specify their own subject matter in alignment with whatever skills they feel they can offer that someone else might wish to learn?
c. Some combination of the two?

3. Ship-specific mentors

If we did go down this route then would we keep the ship-specific mentors also? Even just as a ‘friendly face’ when a new player is landing on their first ever ship? Calé made a good suggestion that we might take the approach of having primary/secondary/tertiary mentors (although we don’t need to label them as such). Roughly broken down as:

  • Primary mentors - your 'ship buddy' who looks out for you when you're new and helps you to settle in and find places to post
  • Secondary mentors - skills-based mentors as described above
  • Tertiary mentors - specialist mentors like CO/XO/DH/GM specific

Is having this many mentors overkill or too much of a potential administrative burden? Or is it a nice way to allow more people to get involved with sharing their knowledge to other players? Again, interested to hear opinions.

4. Other Suggestions

If you don’t like this idea at all, then what other approaches might make mentorship more appealing to the club at large? Or alternatively, do you feel like the program works just fine as is and should be left alone?

Thanks in advance for your time,

  • Sharon (Mentor’s Co-Ordinator)

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